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Michael Nelson

Contributing and Book Editor

Michael Nelson is the Fulmer Professor of Political Science at Rhodes College, a Senior Fellow at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center, and a Fellow at Southern Methodist University’s Center for Presidential History.

In 2015, the American Political Science Association gave Nelson the Richard E. Neustadt Award for the outstanding book on the Presidency and Executive Politics published during the previous year for Resilient America: Electing Nixon in 1968, Channeling Dissent, and Dividing Government. He and his former Rhodes student and colleague, John Lyman Mason, won the Southern Political Science Association’s 2009 V.O. Key Award for Outstanding Book on Southern Politics for How the South Joined the Gambling Nation: The Politics of State Policy Innovation.

Nelson received the Jeffrey Nordhaus and the Ellen Gregg Ingalls awards for excellence in teaching at Vanderbilt University, where he taught as a tenured professor for twelve years. His article on the Baltimore Orioles was included in the book Best Sports Stories 1979; another, on the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, won the ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award for music journalism.

Nelson’s books on the presidency and presidential elections include The American Presidency: Origins and Development, 1776-2015, with Sidney M. Milkis (2016); The Presidency and the Political System, 10th ed. (2014); and Presidents, Politics and Policy, with Erwin C. Hargrove (1984). The Elections of 2012 (2013) marked the eighth in a series of postelection books that began with The Elections of 1984.

In addition to political topics, Nelson has written lengthy articles about Charles Dickens, Frank Sinatra, Garrison Keillor, C. S. Lewis, baseball, and football. A former writer-editor with the Washington Monthly he is a frequent contributor to the Claremont Review of Books and the Weekly Standard.

Nelson created and, with Sewanee president John L. McCardell, edits the American Presidential Elections book series for the University Press of Kansas. He is currently writing a book on the 1992 and 1996 elections.

Updated September 2015

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Charles E. Cook, Jr.
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